Ain't Nobody Got Time for That Re-upholstering Business!

Peach Velvet Wingback Chair

So a few months back I bought a luxe peach velvet wingback chair at my favorite thrifting spot, The FISH Monroe.  With a solid, American made construction, in-tact fabric, and priced at only $12, I knew that I could not go wrong.  I would just buy some cute fabric, You-Tube how to reupholster a chair, and Voila!  New chair!  Oh yeah, we're building a house, so it didn't really go like that.  Here is how it went:  Unload giant chair at home.  Husband spots giant chair and begs "Whyyyyyy???".  I reassured him that I'd have it reupholstered in just a few days.  DIY doesn't scare me!  

I loaded up the kids and we hit the fabric Mecca in Covington, GA, OHCO.  I purchased several different fabrics because I just could not make my mind up on what fabric I wanted to use and where the chair would ultimately end up living.  

Fabric from OHCO's scrap room

Two months later, said chair is sitting in my carport covered in ants.  I haven't touched it, nor have I made any headway with choosing which fabric to use.  Throw it away?  Send it back to FISH as a donation (not admitting to how many times I've done this)?  Or just figure something else out.  

While I was searching for a chalk paint recipe for another project, I came across a chalk painted fabric tutorial.  I looked deeper into the subject of painting upholstery fabric and found this adorable video by Shades of Blue Interiors where she uses Annie Sloan Chalk Paint and refreshes an antique velvet chair.  So I thought, "Ok, let's do this!"

I used some old sample paint as a base/primer to try and diminish some of the salmon color before choosing the shade that my chair would actually be.  I made my own chalk paint from Plaster of Paris and sample quarts from Sherwin Williams (more on this later).  I wet the fabric with a spray bottle and painted on one coat of a white chalk paint and let it dry for about a week.  It was probably dry after 45 minutes, but kids, work, building a house...the chair was on the back burner again.

Fast forward to prepping for a staging job in Athens, GA and I needed a side chair for a navy and kelly green themed living area.   I decided to finish this chair and paint it a nice blue, Naval by Sherwin Williams.  I  mixed up my watered down chalk paint and started slapping it on.  This took, literally two hours total.  I would haves still been trying to reupholster in 2034.  I got two good coats of paint on the chair and didn't really have any lag time to wait for the first coat to dry since it was 96 degrees.  I then sanded the legs and painted them Dovetail by Sherwin Williams.  After everything was nice and dry, I used a fine grit sanding block and lightly sanded all of the fabric covered areas.  This softens the fabric.  Some tutorials suggested using wax to finish the paint process, but others disliked the wax finish.  I'm opting out of the wax because I don't have any readily available, but not totally writing it off for the long term.  So, check her out!

Chalk Painted Wingback Chair in Sherwin Williams Naval


I can't wait to see how this chair looks in the Athens house!  I am super excited about this new method to changing up upholstered furniture without the time or financial commitment of reupholstering.  What do you guys think?  

Chalk Painting Fabric DIY

Donna Peters

Front Porch Design Studio, Monroe, GA 30656, USA